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Curbed Comparisons: What $1,600 Rents You in San Francisco

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Tiny apartments for less in Cow Hollow, Bayview, the Richmond, and the Tenderloin. Which one strikes your fancy?

Welcome to Curbed Comparisons, a regular column exploring what you can rent for a set dollar amount in different neighborhoods. Is one person's studio another person's townhouse? Let's find out. Today's price: $1,600.

↑ Since the city is considering legalizing new in-laws by the tens of thousands, this in-law studio in the Bayview for $1,495/month is both affordable and topical. It's located in the Quesada Gardens neighborhood, a block from Third Street and from Palou & Phelps Park. And while it's nothing special to look at (though the bamboo floors are a nice touch), it is a habitable and suitable space in which to reside, especially compared to some of the poorly built in-laws you see that resemble botched crawlspaces. No pets allowed, but maybe that's best since the yard isn't technically yours.

↑ If you prefer an apartment over an in-law in the same neighborhood, check out this one-bedroom place on Bayview Street, just down the block from the Bayview Opera House, for $1,590/month. (The ten dollars off the rent pays for almost two Uber Pool trips downtown, per the rates laid out in the ad.) Not much to look at, aesthetically-speaking, but decent enough. And at this price point, it's one of the only rentals in the city with discrete rooms and a full kitchen. No pets. Alas.

↑ SRO living means making some sacrifices and judgment calls, but you don't necessarily have to give up the possibility of a prestigious address. In fact, your SRO might be right smack in the middle of Cow Hollow, in a 116-year-old building on Union Street for $1,500/month. It's a small place with parquet floors and shared bathroom, but it is on a stunning street not too far from the Flood Mansion. And seeing as how it's an SRO, there are most certainly no pets allowed.

↑ San Francisco SROs are traditionally the bread and butter of the Tenderloin, but lately there have been a slew of micro-units that are even tinier, but do at least have good-sized kitchens and large ADA-compliant bathrooms. This pocket-sized pad on Turk goes for $1,495/month. It's advertised as "very small" more than once, but in a town where (depending on who you ask) the average apartment rents for between $3,500 and $4,000 a month, this is one of the cheapest sets of walls you'll find anywhere. Dogs and cats are both permitted. At last!

↑ Finally, if you prefer the tranquility of the beach to the hustle of the eastern neighborhoods, there's always this studio in the Outer Richmond. It seems to be having some color correction problems, but it's $1,588/month and not far from the sand.